NORTHFIELD, Vt. – The No. 5-ranked Norwich University women's ice hockey team picked up its first non-conference win of the 2012-13 season on Wednesday night with a 2-1 win over Amherst at Kreitzberg Arena.
The Cadets (10-2-3, 9-1-0 ECAC East) got goals from senior forward Jillayne DeBus (Howell, Mich.) and junior forward Tori Charron (Tecumseh, Ontario), while sophomore goalie Loren Carrier (Chandler, Ariz.) made 16 saves to life Norwich to the victory in a rematch of last year's NCAA Quarterfinal.
After a scoreless first period which featured a lot of blocked shots and play in the neutral zone, Norwich finally struck first blood at the 7:39 mark of the second period when Charron lit the lamp for her team-leading 14th goal of the season.
Charron smacked home a puck over the outstretched arm of Amherst goalie Kerri Stuart after a shot from the point by Brittany Sharman (Ayer's Cliff, Quebec) ricocheted of traffic in front of the net right to the stick of Charron on the right doorstep of the cage. Sophomore forward Kaycie Anderson (Maple Plain, Minn.) also picked up an assist on the goal.
Early in the third period DeBus added to the Cadets' lead with a shorthanded 2-on-1 goal at the 1:41 mark. DeBus beat Stuart to the right side of the net off a pass from Emily MacKinnon (Kirkland, Quebec) after Sharman started the break by blocking a crossing pass on a 2-on-1 for Amherst.
Amherst (7-6-1, 5-2-1 NESCAC) turned up the pressure in frantic search of a goal and finally was able to convert on its third power play chance of the period when senior defenseman and defending NESCAC Player of the Year Geneva Lloyd buried her team-leading ninth goal of the season.
After a long battle along the boards, Amherst's Courtney Baranek finally emerged from the scrum with the puck. She skated out from the half boards and flipped the puck back to Ashley Salerno at the point. Salerno moved to her right to evade a Norwich defender and then slid the puck over to Lloyd who started to pinch down towards the slot. Lloyd quickly wristed the puck into the lower right corner of the ne to beat Carrier and cut the deficit to 2-1.
The Lord Jeffs continued to mount pressure searching for the equalizer and pulled their goalie for the final 32 seconds. The move nearly paid off as Amherst had two great chances in the waning moments of the game. Tori Salmon slid a shot just wide with nine seconds to go and then Carrier stoned Emily Flom point blank as the buzzer sounded to preserve the win for Norwich.
Norwich outshot Amherst 19-17 for the game, but Amherst held a 9-5 advantage in the third period. Carrier made 16 saves to improve to 7-2-1 on the season, while Stuart stopped 17 shots to fall to 5-3-1 on the year.
The Cadets leveled the all-time series with Amherst to 3-3 with the victory and maintained their perfect record against the Lord Jeffs at Kreitzberg Arena. NU is now 3-0-0 all-time against Amherst at home.
Norwich continues its important stretch of games as the Cadets travel down to Stamford, Conn. on Friday to take on ECAC East unbeaten and archrival Manhattanville at 7:30 p.m. at the Terry Connors Rink. NU follows up with Nichols on Saturday at 7:40 p.m.